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Women in Astronomy

What a Just Response to Oppression Can Look Like

4 Nov 2015, 18:03 UTC
What a Just Response to Oppression Can Look Like
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

The below guest post by Dr. Sarah Ballard has been reproduced (with permission) from Prof. John Johnson's blog: Mahalo .ne.Trash.“What woman here is so enamored of her own oppression that she cannot see her heelprint upon another woman’s face?” – Audre LordeI’m writing this piece to say things women of color have already said, and better than I could have. Please read their work.Our community has suffered a traumatic upheaval this month. I won’t attempt to link to even a representative sample of the articles, think pieces, and anti-harassment policy documents that circulated among astronomers. Trusted colleagues and friends urged folks to care for themselves. The groundswell gave rise to a “widespread ripple of PTSD (or something close to it) through women in the field,” as Lucianne Walkowicz put it. I saw other male astronomers I deeply esteem publicly grappling with feelings of complicity. Every day brought fresh distress as the extent of harassment, and the secrecy and protection of it, became apparent at every level within our academic institutions.Colleagues had urged me to prepare, before the publication of the Buzzfeed story (both emotionally and with respect to my internet presence), for a GamerGate-like backlash.  I am relieved to report that the ...

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